What T Campbell is Reading

T Campbell is editor of Graphic Smash, writer of Fans, Rip & Teri and more than a couple of Comixpedia articles, and a slave to trends. What’s he reading?

“In webcomics, I’m currently working my way through the Modern Tales lineup in alphabetical order. Most of them I read all the way through, though a few of them just don’t interest me at all. Just got through No Stereotypes. I also regularly read a few standbys: Sluggy Freelance, PVP, CRFH, GPF, It’s Walky, Clan of the Cats, Gaming Guardians. And of course, everything on Graphic Smash.

"In printed comics, I’m sticking with Strangers in Paradise for a little while longer at least, now that Terry’s finally getting around to some of the stories I wanted him to write three years ago. Mark Waid just 0wn0rs Fantastic Four. The fanboy in me craves it, along with JLA/Avengers and a lot of Brian Michael Bendis’ work.

"Textwise, I just got through Chris Sherman’s The Invisible Web and a book of Harlan Ellison short stories, and I’m reading a whole lotta blogs, ’cause all the cool people are writing them these days. Only half kidding: they have a perspective that I miss from my college years.

"What’s next? I want to finish off Preacher (yes, I know the series wrapped years ago) and pick up Cory Doctorow’s new collection… I’ve read a couple of his short stories and he’s an author to watch. Webcomics-wise, I’ll keep working my way down the alphabet with Modern Tales, then start on one of the other collectives… probably Keenspot or Girlamatic.

"Yeah, I’m serious, I really do read all this stuff. Scary, huh?"


Xaviar Xerexes

Wandering webcomic ronin. Created Comixpedia (2002-2005) and ComixTalk (2006-2012; 2016-?). Made a lot of unfinished comics and novels.


  1. Everybody goes to the Keen’s. Or to Modern Tales. Or GirlaMatic. Or some other Modern Tales sister site. Take a step away from the ordinary–Try DrunkDuck.com. There are some great little comics AND comicstrips there that get overlooked because everyone who seems to review webcomics always heads for the “usual suspects”.

    Here’s a challenge, not just to T.Campbell but to Comixpedia readers and reviewers–Try something new. Try DrunkDuck.com. If the comic strips like “Dead Air” don’t get you, comics like “G.A.A.K”, or “WanderJive”, or “UNA-Frontiers”, or “ShadowBridge”, or “The Gods of Arr-lean”, etc, etc, will. There’s everything from humor to horror, manga to murder, and everything in between to be found in it’s listings–If you just bother to look.

    Treat yourselves this thanksgiving–Try Drunkduck.com


  2. Suddenly, I’m far less inclined to go read comics hosted on Drunk Duck. Can’t imagine why.

    Oh, right — plugmatter! Written in the same tone my youth pastor used to exhort adolescents to read their Teen Study Bibles! I will now smack my hand to my forehead.

    There. See. Red skin.

    (In other words: wasn’t there a better way to hijack the thread, dude?)

  3. I understand DeeMan’s thinking – it’s every creator’s desire to see more attention for their work or those of their friends (and allies?).

    I don’t think the Pedia has been overly focused on Keen and/or MT though – just scroll through our reviews and interviews and you’ll see plenty of comics with no affiliation at all.

    Drunk Duck folks have sent a few news items our way – they could certainly do that more proactively – if it’s news I’m sure we’d be interested in publishing it.

    As for this regular Thursday column, it is what it is – a list of what different people are reading. I have no control over that! 🙂 Hopefully though you’ll see some good picks from this series that you may check out that you otherwise wouldn’t have.

  4. I understand being tired of the same old whatever. (I disagree that Mr. Campbell reading the stuff which is significantly linked to his professional life is a plug — I mean, they asked, and if that’s what he’s doing…) But I’m so not down with the tacky approach chappy there took. There had to have been a better way to do it. Subtler. Whatever. Hell, chappy coulda put in a news item about how wicked awesome the service is and how the MAN keeps it down, and it would have come across less tacky. (Besides, then one can work in Nat X references.)

    I suppose I get a little bristly every time I see someone use the word “challenge” outside the context of pistols at dawn, though. Sodding motivational speakers.

  5. I suppose that makes me “chappy”.

    My challenge was not to ONLY go to drunkduck, but to try something new in general. Like the other guy said, how many times can we read a “what’s this one or that one reading” and read that he/she is reading the exact same thing as the last few people who post a “what I’m reading” are.

    If all webcomics readers are reading is the same old thing (PvP, sluggy, Keen, etc) without trying something new, or exposing the new to the webcomic reading masses, then webcomics are going to fall into the same rut that print comics have fallen into with PvP and Sluggy replacing the latest “X” or “Ultimate” title. Try somethng new, whatever it is. That’s the challenge.


    TheDeeMan aka Chappy 🙂

  6. The assignment, as I recall it, was to respond with what I was reading at that particular point in time. So, I listed the five comics that I had most recently read and enjoyed. They weren’t necessarily the five best things I’ve ever read online, just the five best things I had recently read. So none of the MT or Keen comics came into it, but that was pretty much just because I wasn’t reading those at that particular time.

    I guess my point is that the question isn’t “Five comics someone thinks everyone should be reading that they may not have heard of”, or “Someone’s five favorite online comics ever”, it was “What is so-and-so reading right now.” Go into it with that frame of reference, and I don’t think people will be disappointed with the outcome.

  7. Since Deeman is posting this viewpoint on various places on the site let me just list some facts here, starting with a list of webcomics we’ve reviewed this year. This is a list that is only the “big guns” of webcomics?

    Nowhere Girl reviewed by Damonk
    Narbonic reviewed by Matt Trepal
    Shadowlark Symphony reviewed by Alan Knight
    Checkerboard Nightmare reviewed by Kelly J Cooper
    Bite Me! reviewed by Chris Daily
    Bueno the Bear reviewed by Justin
    Movie Comics reviewed by Kelly J. Cooper
    Small Stories by Derek Kirk, Reviewed by Matt Trepal
    Dicebox by Jenn Manley Lee, Reviewed by Kelly J. Cooper
    Dewclaw by Matt Johnson, Reviewed by Stelas
    Apocamon: The Final Judgement by Patrick Farley, Reviewed by Kelly Cooper
    Return to Sender by Vera Brosgol, Reviewed by Justin
    Cat and Girl by Dorothy Gambrell, Reviewed by Chris Daily
    Heads that Shine by Vicho Friedli, Reviewed by Justin
    Demonology 101 by Faith Erin Hicks, Reviewed by Kelly J. Cooper
    Keaner.net by Kean Soo, reviewed by Stelas
    Toddbot.com’s Cartoon Journal by Todd Webb, reviewed by Justin
    The Journal Comic by Drew Weing, reviewed by Kelly J Cooper
    Imitation of Life by Neil, reviewed by Chris Daily
    American Elf by James Kochalka, reviewed by Matt Trepal
    ProxyRoxy by Roxy Liao, reviewed by Kelly J Cooper
    Stymied by Peter Conrad, reviewed by Damonk
    Cascadia by Clio Chiang, reviewed by Matt Trepal
    The Wandering Ones by Clint Hollingsworth, Reviewed by Kelly J Cooper
    Ku-2 by Logan DeAngelis, Reviewed by Chris Daily
    Polymer City Chronicles by Chris Morrison, Reviewed by Justin
    Sluggy Freelance by Pete Abrams, reviewed by Kelly J. Cooper
    Zortic by Mark Mekkes, reviewed by Stelas
    Movie Punks by Carrington Vanston, reviewed by Damonk
    Stickler and Hat-trick review The Lounge by John Joseco
    Ghost Hunters by Eunice P., reviewed by Kelly J. Cooper
    Lovarian Adventures by Gabriel Fua, reviewed by Kelly J Cooper
    Wish3 by Sylvia T. Leung, reviewed by Matt Trepal
    Schism by Leigh Bader, reviewed by Chris Daily
    Eversummer Eve by Denise Jones, reviewed by Justin
    Stickler and Hat-Trick review Ornery Boy by Michael Lalonde
    Commander Kitty by Scotty Arsenault, reviewed by Matt Trepal
    Faux Pas by R&M Creative Endeavours, reviewed by Apis Teicher
    Pokey the Penguin by Steve Havelka, reviewed by Justin
    She’s A Nightmare by Jesse Chen, reviewed by Kelly J. Cooper
    The 10kCommotion by Yukon Makoto, reviewed by Stelas
    Skinny Panda by Phil Cho, reviewed by Matt Trepal
    Unicorn Jelly by Diane Reitz, reviewed by Matt Trepal
    Anne Frank Conquers The Moon Nazis by Bill Mudron, reviewed by Shaenon Garrity
    Avalon by Josh Phillips, reviewed by Apis Teicher
    greeneyes by William Van Hecke et al., reviewed by Stelas
    Tril0kan by Suburi, reviewed by Justin
    Stickler and Hat-Trick review Dana Kelly’s Residence Life
    Sabrina Online by Eric W. Schwartz, Reviewed by Matt Trepal
    Basil Flint by John Troutman, reviewed by Kelly J. Cooper
    Strings of Fate by jen w. tochi, reviewed by Stelas
    Boy Meets Boy by K.Sandra, reviewed by Shaenon Garrity
    Young Bottoms in Love by Tim Fish et al., reviewed by Damonk
    Stickler and Hat-Trick review Jason Thompson’s The Stiff
    Elsie Hooper by Robert Krzykowski, reviewed by Kelly J Cooper
    Christopher Mills’ Supernatural Crime, reviewed by Justin
    Lee Adam Herold’s Chopping Block, reviewed by Damonk
    Dorothy Gambrell’s New Adventures of Death, reviewed by Matt Trepal
    Cox and Forkum by John Cox and Allan Forkum, reviewed by Apis Teicher

  8. For the record, I reviewed CHECKERBOARD NIGHTMARE before it went to KeenSpot, DICEBOX before it went to Girlamatic, SHE’S A NIGHTMARE before it went to Graphic Smash, and BASIL FLINT, P.I. before it went to KeenSpot. They were all indies/KeenSpacers when I looked at them.

    (Not to imply that a review from me is helpful with anything. Two others have stated that they’re done or ending, three or so are on hiatus, and one started using BitPass. Life being random.)

    Kelly J.

  9. “Chappy” = guy, person over there, that dude, &c. Sorry; this country has too many British people in it and it’s polluting my phrasing. But I can’t very well call you “Dee.”

    It’s *not* a challenge, though. It’s just an exhortation. It would be a challenge if it were difficult. You can dig up any number of non-four-major-players with a simple skim through the aforementioned ‘Paedia reviews, or a look through stuff linked to by any number of said major players, or through the fora of saidsame players. Or one could go to any number of Keenspace comics (and then some), many of which are linked from Other Major Players, and follow linkage to Hello I Am A Voting Site For Comics, and WHAM listage. Okay, sometimes those lists are very orange, but you can’t win everything.

    I get what you’re saying, and I’m sort of down with it (honestly, though, I think that anyone who’s coming here on any sort of regular basis has signed up for the choir). Your sentiment, however, was busy being crushed by the cheerleading and the overt product placement, and I’m not sure you’re hearing that.

  10. And I swear that there were paragraph divisions in the submitted text…. ahhhhhh, sod.

    Now, see, the whole “hey, where’s the watch list thing?” No problem there. Not tacky. Right on.

  11. Suggestion: scrap “What X is reading”, substitute “What X thinks deserves more attention”.

  12. That could work as well. For starters. The point is to widen the audience for webcomics, not narrow it’s audience like print comics do by excluding the lesser known in favor of the more popular others.

    I mean, your more likely to check out a new webcomic if it’s suggested by someone you know and trust, who’s opinions you respect, right? Well, isn’t that why we show up at Comixpedia in the first place? To find out the latest goings on, new trends, and great new webcomics that exist out there in the wonderful world of webcomics? It just seemed the natural thing to do to me.


  13. DeeMan’s post doesn’t sound anymore or less like a plug than any of the various “What’s So-n-So reading” posts are. I think he actually has a point. Unless “What’s So-N-So reading?” actually helps expand the horizons of the webcomic conversation by exposing potential readers to new and different comics that they might enjoy reading, “What’s So-N-So reading?” amounts to little more than a vanity post. I mean, how many million more times must we read that someone likes Sluggy or PvP?

    And if T. Campbell, the editor of Modern Tales “Graphic Smash” sister site, mentioning that he reads Modern Tales comics isn’t a plug, I don’t know what is.

  14. The point is that if evryone is reading the same 4 or 5 comics (or so it seems), and others read that everyone else are reading essentially the same 4 or 5 comics (or so it seems), then they too will read those same 4 or 5 comics. Ultimately those same 4 or 5 comics will only be what’s read. If you don’t think that the constant mention of these same 4 or 5 comics (links included) works on an almost subliminal level then your fooling yourselves. Hey, everyones reading Sluggy, then I should “Read-More-Sluggy”.

    It’s bad enough that publications like Wizard hawk Marvel, DC, Image, and Crossgen to the exclusion of all the hard working indy creators busting their asses to make a little niche for themselves, without Comixpedia’s constant mention of how everyone is reading Sluggy, PvP, Keen, or Modern Tales.

    The point is that do comics like Sluggy, PvP, or Keen need more press? Are they lacking in readership? No? Then don’t you think that all the space provided to them on seemingly a daily basis could better serve the webcomics community by spotlight more of that community? Or maybe I’m expecting too much.

    You know what? Never mind. Now I’m off to “Read-More-Sluggy”.

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